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Merck: Keytruda fails twice in phase 3 trials

( - Merck announced on Wednesday that two clinical trials of its cancer drug Keytruda have failed, a setback that could raise questions about the potential for new indications for this flagship immunotherapy.

The US biopharmaceutical company this morning said that a first phase 3 trial had failed to meet its two primary endpoints, including improved survival in treated patients.

The trial - called Keynote-921 - evaluated the combination of Keytruda and chemotherapy in patients with castration-resistant prostate cancer.

Another phase 3 clinical trial, this one of Keytruda, in combination with Eisai's Lenvima, also failed to meet its overall survival and progression-free survival endpoints in non-operable hepatocellular carcinoma, a liver cancer.

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